Tatterdemalion (Foundations of Magic, #1)

Tatterdemalion (Foundations of Magic, #1) - Anah Crow,  Dianne Fox Oh. My. Goodness. This is actually a 4.5

Are you looking for an easy, unchallenging read, full of cliches? Then do not read this book. Are you looking for the same old tired m/m plot lines? Then don't read this book. Do you need to have everything explained to you upfront in great, info-dumping detail? Have all your questions answered? Then Don't Read This Book.

From the first heart-pounding scene to the last, Tatterdemalion seizes the reader in both taloned fists and refuses to let go. Action and violence enough to satisfy the adventure-lover, sex both tender and heated to satisfy the erotic lover, and world building enough, ah, yes, to satisfy the fantasy lover.

World building. So often lost in erotic romance or scattered about in such scant and negligent detail to feel almost insulting. Not. Here. Breathe it in. Let it take you. The fairy house in the woods was painted in such wonderful detail. The grime and grit of alleys. The anthill scurry and anxiety of airports. I'm so often busy analyzing that I forget to enjoy. I enjoyed, and often became anxious, actually Anxious for the characters, so much so that I snapped at my family to go away during tense scenes.

The characters? On the surface, you may think you see the classic m/m romance couple - Big Tough Man and little pretty man (boy). Ah, but it's only surface. Our Alpha is not cast from the typical mold - Dane is damaged and confused by human interaction more often than not. And Lindsay, though horribly broken in mind and spirit, is hardly the cringing flower in need of constant rescue. The growth, together and separately, was both satisfying and believable. There's enough left open at the end where there could be more, but I didn't feel it was necessary. If the writers want to leave us there, I'm content.

There were a couple of pacing oddities, but these were minor bumps and I did sort of cock my head to the side like a puzzled terrier when Lindsay never really confronts that fact that he killed a heck of a lot of people. He understands it was horrible, though it was a desperate sort of accident on his part, but he sort of holds the knowledge at arms' length, I thought.

Want some lovely writing and a ripping good story? Want characters who get to keep some of their secrets and who dare you not to fall in love with them? Read. This. Book.